Friday, May 31 2013, 12:15 PM MDT
DVD Review: Gregory Crewdson - Brief Encounters
Rated: Not Rated
Street Date: May 21 2013
Available On: DVD
Synopsis: Director Ben Shapiro follows photographer Gregory Crewdson for a decade as he works on his “Beneath the Roses” project.
Extras: Deleted Scenes, Additional Interviews, Film Independent at LACMA Q&A and Original Theatrical Trailer
Recommendation: Gregory Crewdson approaches still photography like an obsessive-compulsive movie director. He wants to control every aspect of the image down to the smallest detail. His images are reminiscent of Kar Wai Wong’s films in that they are beautiful, haunting and convey a stark loneliness. However, unlike filmmakers Crewdson is not telling a story. He’s merely showing a split second to tempt your imagination to create what happens next and what came before.
The majority of the film finds Crewdson driving around scouting for locations and talking with the locals of the small town where he stages his pictures. It’s a frank and uncensored look at an artist searching for perfection. When things go wrong his frustrations boil over in a way that reminds me of Terry Gilliam in the behind-the-scenes documentary The Hamster Factor and Other Tales of Twelve Monkeys. He knows exactly how he wants something to look and will endlessly labor to produce the image as it exists inside his head. There is no substitute for perfection.
-Ryan Michael Painter